1. Liverpool and Tottenham to battle for the crown
Despite Leicester City currently holding the top spot in the Premier League, Liverpool should still be the favorites. The match between the two this weekend will be a great preview of what is to come, and I think Liverpool will flex their muscle. Despite a season-ending knee injury for stalwart center back Virgil Van Dijk and a couple of positive COVID-19 tests for star forward Mo Salah, the men from Anfield will be tough to beat. New signing from Wolves, Diogo Jota, is in great form and will look to fill Salah’s massive vacancy while the Egyptian striker recovers from illness. Jota has scored six goals in his last five matches and leads the Liverpool attack. Pair him with Sadio Mané and Roberto Firmino and the front line is still more than a little dangerous without Salah.
Meanwhile, Tottenham (Spurs) are also looking like a formidable force at the top of the table. Spurs are unbeaten in their last six Premier League matches and have enjoyed positive starts to life in North London from both of their main new signings from Real Madrid, Sergio Reguilón and Gareth Bale. The squad also has two of the top five goal scorers in the league in Son Heung-min and Harry Kane with eight and seven goals respectively to their names. Kane also leads the league in assists with eight, showing a new passing threat to his game. Spurs can score in many ways, and they will be tough to beat down the stretch of this Premier League season.
2. Man United and Arsenal to continue to struggle
Neither Arsenal nor Manchester United have looked like sides that will challenge for the Premier League’s top four near the end of the season. Barring a massive shift in form from either of the two, I do not think anything will change. Arsenal gave supporters hope after a massive 1-0 victory at Old Trafford against United, but were then smashed 3-0 in their next match by Aston Villa, in true Gunners fashion. They tend to set supporters up with a momentous victory and give a glimpse of hope and then play some of their worst football right after. Their next three matches are all tough tests in Leeds, Wolves and Spurs. None of those will be easy matches, and they will likely drop points in each.
United on the other hand, gave their supporters even more hope than Arsenal did. The Red Devils went into the Parc des Princes and beat Paris Saint Germain in the Champions League and then followed that up by smashing Redbull Leipzig 5-0 in their next European match. With a draw to Chelsea in between the two Champions League matches, they looked to be in great position for a strong push. However, United then fell to Arsenal at home and followed that abysmal result up with a shocking 2-1 loss to Turkish side İstanbul Bașakșehir in the Champions League.
Both Arsenal and United are in the bottom half of the table, and nothing about their football currently makes me believe they will ascend.
3. Chelsea to bring it all together
Chelsea is really starting to look the part. If you remember some of my earlier pieces, I mentioned that they need to continue to gel and become more cohesive with all of their new signings. They seem to be doing just that. They are unbeaten in their last eight matches in all competitions and in their last five in the Premier League. They sit at fifth place in the Premier League and first in their Champions League group.
Most importantly for the Blues, their new men are beginning to shine. New forward, Timo Werner, has scored five goals in his last four matches and looks like the mercurial German we saw at Redbull Leipzig over the past few seasons. His blistering pace and clinical finishing is coming to the fore as he has started to rack up goals. Similarly, Hakim Ziyech and Ben Chillwell have also fit in rather seamlessly, playing important minutes and contributing to several goals themselves.
The important thing now for Chelsea will be getting United States starlet Christian Pulisic back from a hamstring injury and continuing to get results domestically and beyond. They look primed for a Champions League run and, at the minimum, a top four spot by the end of the Premier League season.